FORMER head of the Šamorín tax office, Mária Zakálová, confirmed in her testimony before the Specialised Criminal Court that businessmen Sergei and Alexander Salmanov offered her a bribe to help them with excessive VAT deductions.

Zakálová, a Smer member, told the Sme daily that back in 2010 she was hired as the head of Šamorín’s tax office after giving €33,000 in an envelope as a sponsorship gift to the head of Smer’s branch in Dunajská Streda, Štefan Radics. According to her, Sergei Salmanov gave her the money. This happened in March 2010, i.e. at the end of the term of the first Robert Fico government. In the 2012 parliamentary elections Radics was 138th on Smer’s slate. He also ran unsuccessfully for the post in the Trnava regional parliament in the recent elections.

Neither Smer nor Radics, who currently serves as mayor in Hubice, Dunajská Streda district, have commented on the accusation. An employee of the town hall in Hubice said he is currently abroad. The Salmanovs could face up to 12 years in prison for their part in the case.

Zakálová repeated her testimony from several months ago, claiming that money from the Salmanovs also went to the coffers of the ruling Smer party, Sme wrote on May 23. The prosecutor confirmed that a criminal prosecution has already been started in connection with the alleged party bribe, which has to be investigated.

(Source: Sme)
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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